Photo illustration by Lindsay Whelchel, Oklahoma Watch.
Two private health insurance companies participating in the Affordable Care Act market in Oklahoma are expected to leave the program next year, while another big insurer wants in.
The shuffle, which would occur on Jan. 1, illustrates the rapid evolution of the “Obamacare” health insurance marketplace as it approaches its third year of operation. Some insurers are finding it difficult to make a profit on Affordable Care Act policies, while others see an opportunity that could pay off big over time.
The companies who want out would be required to notify all of their existing Oklahoma policyholders that their coverage is being cancelled as of Dec. 31. It would be up to the policyholders to find new plans.
When the dust settles, three insurance companies are expected to participate in the Affordable Care Act market in Oklahoma next year:
• Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma, the dominant insurer with the most policy options.
• CommunityCare of Oklahoma, which provides health maintenance organization (HMO) plans only.
• UnitedHealthcare, a big national health insurer and the new entrant in the Oklahoma market.
Two companies are expected to drop out of the Obamacare market in Oklahoma:
• Assurant Health, a national insurer that recently announced plans to abandon its health policy business.
• GlobalHealth, a Tulsa-based provider of health maintenance organization plans.
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